Cover Image: One Small Step

One Small Step

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Member Reviews

This is a perfectly fine slow burn romance as far as the pacing of the action goes. The two leads, Iris and Cameron, have a lot of issues to work through, and it leads to a very intense, if very elongated courtship between the two. So, when they finally do get together, it happens very very late in the book and that actually loses a lot of the payoff of all the other stuff that the author build up so painstakingly throughout the rest of the book.

Cameron is trying to navigate through a low point in her relationship with her fiance and moving to London for his job. She does feel neglected and hurt that Ryan doesn't seem to have any kind of time for her, and seems to be less considerate of her feelings than of his own. She then meets Iris while practicing for the first time with their company women's soccer team, and they hit it off immediately. Iris has some baggage in her past, and is a kindred soul that Cameron just can't ignore. This starts a rather intense and intimate friendship that set both of them reeling.

There's a lot of stuff going on here that makes for a good look into a person dealing with the end of their relationship, but is unwilling or emotionally incapable of letting go. I found it interesting that the biggest problem between Ryan and Cam is that they are dancing around the issues - Ryan is using his work and Cameron is using her new friendship with Iris. It draws a ton of stuff out almost painfully, and unfortunately Cam is just this side of selfish enough to drag Iris into the drama.

What I found both interesting and frustrating about the book is that all three people within this tangled up relationship share at least some of the blame for some of the emotional distress. Iris isn't clear about her needs with Cam. Cam is a terrible communicator and can't confront Ryan on his behavior and her feelings. Ryan seems to not really understand Cam, and is very bad at including her in plans that really should involve them both.

This has a ton of angst in it, which is fine. Like I said, it is a slow burner, but with both characters actually acknowledging their feelings to themselves, but not able to express it to each other, or to Ryan. There are some themes that it doesn't quite follow through on, and others that it hits on really well. Overall, though, I thought it was a little long and perhaps could have benefited from more balance.

I received this ARC in exchange for my honest review.
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A very good debut romance with a nice plot and setting and some well done characters. One of the leads was kind of a pain to deal with though. I didn't like her much and knocked one star off because of her but the story worked for me and I enjoyed it regardless of that. In fact I'm pleasantly surprised with this debut author and am looking forward to more books by her. Recommended to all fans of romance novels.
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Iris is still reeling from a bad breakup. She has moved on from the destructive behaviour she regrets and is afraid to trust her heart to someone new.
Cam is a new employee who joins the office soccer team while Iris is out of town for work. She’s talented, beautiful and engaged to a man. She’s also lonely and hopes to make some friends on the team. Can these two find a way to be friends and teammates and keep their libidos under control?

I enjoyed this debut novel and loved the interaction between Cam and Iris from the moment they meet. Iris is on her best behaviour and trying hard not to fall for the attractive Cam. Cam’s journalistic background has her surprising Iris with personal questions. The two make clear their desire for a “friendship”. Of course this is a romance so it’s not long before they find more and more reasons to spend time with each other.

The soccer team and the few games played take a backseat to the romance but I did like the jealousies and gossip sessions between teammates after the games. . They added a realistic feel to the story. I also liked how the soccer scenes and players showcased the inequities between male and female sponsorship support in team sport.

My only grumble was the drawn out “breakup” scenes. We’ve come to expect the reality check in our romance reads and they can be the key to giving readers the warm fuzzies when a couple overcome their differences and achieve their HEA. In One Small Step indecision, lack of understanding how the other must be feeling and all around dumb, clueless behaviour went on long enough to make me want to bitch slap one of the mains. Less dither would have made this an even better read.

Binfield has talent, no question. I look forward to reading more from this writer.

ARC received with thanks from publisher via NetGalley for review
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I liked this story, but I think that from 80 percent until the end my assessment has worsened a bit. But I can't help considering it good even with that final downturn.Although, after all, the coming drama was quite evident. But not to be expected was welcomed by me, I think it is excessive, because the excess dramas are not my favorite subject in romance. And I have not appreciated how quickly the issue between the two women was resolved, especially Cam's personal situation.

In between, the story is quite interesting. Iris is a woman with a bit of personal trauma due to the recent bad breakup of a relationship, of which she blames herself and for which she does not want to have anything serious again.When she returns from a work trip, she meets a new coworker, Cam, who has also joined the company's amateur soccer team. Cam is an American woman who is in London with her fiancé, no doubt straight, but that arouses curiosity and certainly an attraction in Iris.

So: straight woman plus lesbian womanizer. The formula is not new but it certainly opens up many possibilities. And in this case the straight woman is not so much so, as usually happens and the lesbian womanizer is only because of the gossip of some of her companions. And the way in which they both get to know each other little by little without letting themselves be influenced much by the rest of the work and personal environment that surrounds them, is pleasant and in many occasions certainly very romantic.

In short and despite my little complaints, the book and the story are quite interesting and recommended.
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If you read this book you won’t be disappointed and to top it of you will learn a lot about soccer or as in this book ‘footie’.
    Cameron Hansen is new to London, having followed her fiance when he was offered a job. They had four years together and her mother wanted them to at least set a date for their wedding  but Cam just can’t. She’s unhappy in her relationship with Ryan but if asked why she would have a hard  saying just what the reason is. While in school she’d played soccer so decided to join the team sponsored by the company she worked for  so she could hopefully make a few friends to spend time with while waiting for Ryan to find time to actually be with her.
    Iris Miller works for the same company and is also on the soccer team. She was raised by her father after her mother left them and if asked she’d say she had a great childhood. Her father was always there for her, even when she came out as a lesbian. She’s just broke up with her long term girlfriend and didn’t exactly handle it that well. After lots of one night stands she’d finally decided to settle down and move on. That’s if some members of the team would let her.  The last thing she needed was falling for someone like Cam who’d presented herself as totally straight.
     But as time goes on the women find themselves getting closer, too close. Ms Binfield has written a really good story that once you start you will have a hard time putting down. Very enjoyable read.
ARC via NetGalley/ Bold Stroke Books
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Iris returns from her business trip to find a new team member on her football team. She is captivated by her instantly. Cam has taken Iris’s place while she was away. Team is sponsored by their employer, so all the women know each other and work or worked together.

Iris is recovering from a break up a couple months ago and Cam is trying to find her way in London after moving their with her fiancé. Iris takes Cam on trips around the city and they become good friends. Their relationship builds up slowly and it feels natural. There are some complications on the way when they start to develop more than friendly feelings for each other. The angst feel real and genuine.

I like how the book ends as well, feels good. 

The writer did a good job of writing about an office environment, football and going out and about.
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Iris is an Ops Manager in London. Cam is a new assistant at the same firm. They're both also on the Company's soccer, or, in this case, the football team.

Iris is single and looks to stay that way since she's semi-recently gone through a horrendous break-up.

Meanwhile, Cam is straight and engaged and simply wants a friend in her new home (she's an American who has moved over the Atlantic with her fiancee).

They travel the usual sort of romance plot as Cam slowly realizes her feelings and Iris tries to do anything but listen to hers.

I liked the main characters quite a lot, they were complicated and deep. And the secondary characters were also fun to learn about.

I also liked the soccer stuff too. Although, grrr to one of those secondary (actually, more like tertiary, not cool, not cool.) characters. It was a fun read though.

I received this book via Netgalley thanks to Bold Strokes Books.
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3.5 Stars. This book is about Iris Miller who has been hurt once in love and decides to stay away from relationships. That is until she meets Cameron Hanson,  who joins her law firm and her soccer team, but is engaged to a man. When Iris runs into Cam at a poetry event, she decides she needs to get to know her better. They both cannot stay away from each other and become friends. They have a lot of interested in common, interests Cam does not share with her fiance, Ryan. Ryan seems to not be there at all for Cam, even tho Cam moved from Seattle to London for him. 

I enjoyed thus novel a lot. There was lot of tension between the two characters, as there should be when one of them is engaged to someone else. Their relationship evolves throughout the book and I like how they get to know each other better. This book got dinged a little for some things that seem to come a little out of left field and for Iris seeming so negative about relationships and her past throughout the entire book. I know that kept them from hooking up early on, but it seemed to be avoided too long. This book felt a little long to me, not sure why, but the middle dragged a little when there is drama between the two characters, Iris and Cam. I would still recommend it, it was solid.
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Well written book. Deals with tougher topics of being unhappy in life and relationships and falling for someone else while you're still in a couple (i.e. cheating). 

Cam is drifting through her life, doing what others want and concerned out others' (especially her Mother's) opinion. This has led the American to London, her fiance Ryan, and her job as an accounting office assistant... none of which she's particularly fond of. Things change for Cam when she joins her London offices' women football (soccer for the Americans in the room!) club and starts making friends, particularly Iris. 

Iris has sworn off women after going on a promiscuity binge following a breakup with her cheating ex. Iris knows Cam is off limits. Cam knows she can't be involved with Iris. But... as the two women spend more and more time together, such distance becomes harder and harder to maintain. Eventually, Cam has to make a choice: safety, acceptability and marry Ryan; or take a chance, stay in London and be with Iris.
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A good slow burn romance of friends who fall in love. With a bit of angst and some issues to overcome for the main characters. The story dragged a bit towards the end, but overall a good fun read.
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One Small Step is a tremendous romance début. MA Binfield’s portrayal of a couple in search of the courage to fight for the love that they deserve is written with sheer honesty, humor, and heart. Cheers to ending 2019 on a literary high note!
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One Small Step is a romance novel set in London.

Iris Miller is on a dating hiatus going on nine months after a bad break up. Cameron Hansen an American living in London, engaged to be married—to a man. Their friendship leads to something more, but only in each’s head. They both try to fight it, as they play together on a football team (soccer for Americans), work together, and one of them is straight. Or is she?

There’s really not a lot of will they or won’t they with this book. It’s a romance novel, we all know how it will end. It also is somewhat slow to start. It took me several days to get through the first 15% of the book, and I usually would read a book like this in one day. That said, it’s not bad, and I did like all the soccer talk. And I really did appreciate how falling in love gave the duo courage to do things that they’d been wanting to do for a long time, like read poetry in public.
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Although this writer is new to me and this is her first novel the writing was good and the general story was well organized, I liked it a lot although I would have preferred it to be a little shorter history since there were situations that had nothing to see or contribute to it, but in general I recommend it and I look forward to the other works to see how their writing is growing and evolving.
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I believe that this was a debut novel from MA Binfield and the author did a wonderful job of developing the main chararacters of Iris and Cam with appropriate levels of backstory.  The author did a nice job of creating the friendship between Iris and Cam and writing the evolution of their friendship to something more.  This was definitely a slow burn friendship to romance kind of story that was complicated since Cam was a self-described straight woman.  I enjoyed the story, the growing friendship between the characters, and the intense feelings that they developed toward each other through day-to-day activities involving their football team, work activities, after work dinners, and more.  I would definitely read more offerings by this author.

I received an ARC from Bold Strokes Books and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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The blurb of this book talks about Soccer/ football and there is some on that in the first third of the book. If you are looking for more look elsewhere. It is not a sports book. This is a well written/edited book by what I think is a first time writer. I really liked the first part of the book and getting to know the M/Cs and the story moved along at a good page turning pace. Then it ,well dragged somewhat and In the end I found myself wishing it would end and I did not feel really invested in the MCs. In fact I did not even like them much. The book should have been shorter in my view. All that being said I still look forward to more from this author in the future as she is very polished. 3.5 stars rounded up.
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3.5 *

Another pretty good debut novel, I’m reading a lot of those lately, and that’s really good news.

Coming back to her office and her work football team (football as in soccer) after a business trip, Iris meets Cameron, a new American colleague and teammate. Still hurting not so much from the failure of her last relationship but from the way she behaved after the break-up, Iris has closed herself off to any idea of falling in love again. She’s not immune to Cam’s charms however, and the fact that her new friend is engaged to a ma, and won’t be staying in London forever helps her keep their relationship in check, or so she believes. Cam is not as straight as she seems, and not as indifferent to Iris as she thinks.

In the beginning, One Small Step was too much tell, not enough show, and I was worried I wouldn’t get into the story, but it got a lot better after a while. The pace picked up, and I lost myself in Iris and Cam’s growing feelings and doubts in a very enjoyable way. They’re both endearing characters, and the web of friends and teammates around them is full of interesting people.

A few things puzzled me, for instance how Iris keeps telling Cam she’s so brave and gutsy when she’s so obviously not: she lets her fiancé decide for her all the time, she chose a career she doesn’t care about over her love of writing etc. Another example is how, once they’ve declared their love for each other, they keep questioning it, not trusting either themselves nor the other. As I said, I was puzzled, but it was plausible, I would have been similarly puzzled IRL.

This book undeniably feels like a first novel, which it is so it’s okay, and I’m sure MA Binfield’s writing will keep growing. I’ll keep an eye out for her next book.

I received a copy from the publisher and I am voluntarily leaving a review.
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This romance was super cute from start to finish, but thoughtful, too. I am always, ALWAYS happy to find books that feature bisexual main characters without slagging on them; and likewise, I was delighted to see Binfield portraying a whole range of romantic and sexual behaviors: acknowledging that not all sex leads to romance, that some romances end, that it's possible to be on good terms with former partners. The emotional territory felt genuine to me as well: both in terms of Iris's withdrawal in her previous relationship, and Cam's struggle to understand her own sexuality, and her hesitance to articulate what she wants, and to pursue it. The London setting was just the cherry on the top -- although I will nitpick the tiniest bit, because there's no jogging path in North London that actually takes you in view of the nude sunbathers, and nude swimming certainly isn't allowed. 

All in all, though, I would love to see more from this author, and more about these characters.
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Forbidden attraction.

Iris returns to her work footy team to find that there is a new player. Cameron joined to fill the vacancy while Iris was away.  Iris is immediately taken by Cameron but is very quickly informed that the fit beauty is a recent transplant from America and lives with her fiance, Ryan. The two women develop a friendship that betrays their honorable intentions.

I really loved this book and the gradual way Iris and Cameron's relationship builds. It feels very authentic as they both gain confidence from their genuine care for one another. Whether it is getting support for their hobbies and passions that had gone stagnant or simply spending time together that helped them feel seen and appreciated. The author takes time to carefully build something real between the two of these women. 

Of course, in doing that, it causes a huge conflict of interest. Cameron has no business putting all of her emotions into Iris when she is engaged to be married. Sure, all is not peachy or full of engagement bliss for her and Ryan. He is all wrapped up in work and spends any free time playing sport with his buddies instead of nurturing his relationship with Cameron. But she hasn't been feeling it for awhile. Even before they moved from Seattle. 

Also, Iris is recovering from dissolution of a relationship due to infidelity. Imagine the turmoil she goes through as she finds her feelings growing for her very unavailable friend.

This book kept me intrigued. It had me rooting for Iris and Cameron despite the fact that it was very much forbidden. The whole time I was dreading that the author would take this in an inappropriate direction and at the same time wondering how it could be taken anywhere else.  In the end, I felt that it was tastefully and realistically delivered. 

I recommend this to people who like to read about romance, forbidden love, friends to more, football (the non-American kind), infidelity, being true to oneself, and pubs.
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The blurb of this book talks about Soccer/ football and there is some on that in the first third of the book. If you are looking for more look elsewhere. It is not a sports book. This is a well written/edited book by what I think is a first time writer. I really liked the first part of the book and getting to know the M/Cs and the story moved along at a good page turning pace. Then it ,well dragged somewhat and In the end I found myself wishing it would end and I did not feel really invested in the MCs. In fact I did not even like them much. The book should have been shorter in my view. All that being said I still look forward to more from this author in the future as she is very polished. 3.5 stars rounded up. This book was received from Netgalley and the publisher in return for a honest review
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I'd rate this more of a 4 1/2 star if I could. It was pretty close to a 5 star book, and if you like angst, then you will consider this a 5 star book. Ohhhh the angst! 

I'm always a little leary about reading a book where one of the MC's is straight. I just know I'll get chapters and chapters worth of confusion and angst on the other side of the lesbian MC coin. This book had that in spades, but what the author did wonderfully was make me like Cam. She was so sweet and honest about her feelings that I couldn't help but give her a pass. 

The book felt very rooted in truth, meaning that there wasn't all of this unbelievable drama. Cam and her relationship with her fiancee Ryan was a lot like other relationships I've seen. Iris being gun shy after a terrible relationship felt true. And the pacing of Cam and Iris' relationship, building up to where it goes, was so perfect that I believed them when it got to the crazy feels part. 

I'd definetly read other books from this author, and recommend this one.
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